Confession: I love Riverdale. Not in an ironic way, not in a casual way, not in an “it’s objectively bad but fun to watch” way. I genuinely, truly love Riverdale, and think it’s one of the greatest television shows ever made. It operates on so many levels, is so intricately plotted, and if I even began to get into the Jarchie Longcon and the long, storied past behind the show and of creator and showrunner Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, it would derail this whole post. But if you know me at all, even a little, you know all this. So this post feels a bit inevitable.
No matter where you stand on the epic highs and lows of Riverdale and Archie Comics, one thing is for sure: it knows how to deliver. It’s so easy for Riverdale to get its claws in you and leave you anxious for more because you never really know for certain where it’s going. If you’re looking for more content that promises the same timeless, retro aesthetic, romances as complicated as Archie and Veronica and Betty and Jughead’s, or you’re just looking for a really good mystery (or two) to solve, here are 18 YA books all fans of Riverdale need to pick up next. With Riverdale‘s seven-year timeskip about to hit, if you’re itching to spend more time in their teen years, these reads will keep you there.
Trouble Girls by Julia Lynn Rubin
Trouble Girls may not publish until June, but it needs to find a spot on your TBR ASAP. A reimagined Thelma & Louise marketed with the neon aesthetic of Riverdale, how can you pass up this thrilling, energetic joy ride of a book?
When best friends Trixie and Lux take off for a weekend getaway out of their dead-end small town, they never imagine that just one night will transform them into wanted fugitives and unexpected poster children for the #MeToo movement. As their journey takes increasingly dangerous turn after turn, and with the cops hot on their heels, they’ll discover that the only ones they can rely on are each other.
Sadie by Courtney Summers
What is there to say about Sadie that has not already been said? What more praise could we possibly lavish on this breathtaking, true-crime-podcast-boom inspired book? Probably not much, but if you’ve somehow missed out on this one, we once again urge you to read it. Now. Jughead would.
After Sadie’s sister Mattie is found dead, a botched police investigation makes Sadie her sister’s only hope. She sets out to track down the killer and make him pay for what he did, and she’s willing to risk it all to find out the truth.
When radio personality West McCray catches wind of Sadie’s story, he begins an investigative, Serial-like podcast into her disappearance. Tracing her journey to bring her sister’s killer to justice, West is determined to find Sadie—before it may be too late.
The Hazel Wood by Melissa Albert
Like Riverdale, The Hazel Wood appears to be one thing on the surface, until it suddenly takes you somewhere else entirely.
When Alice’s grandmother, the reclusive author of a book of dark, instant-cult-classic fairy tales, dies suddenly at her estate, The Hazel Wood, Alice imagines her life can’t get much worse—until her mom is stolen away by one of her grandmother’s fictional creations and whisked off to a new world.
Warned to stay away from the estate, going there may be Alice’s mom’s only help. With the help of a Hinterland superfan, Alice will finally venture into her grandmother’s world of nightmares.
Wink Poppy Midnight by April Genevieve Tucholke
One boy. Two girls. We’ve heard this story before, right? But never quite like this. Wicked, spellbinding, and begging for its secrets to be solved, this book is everything a Riverdale fan could want and more.
Midnight is caught between two girls: fiery, mysterious Wink, and beautiful, manipulative queen bee Poppy. Something happened, and someone knows the truth. But someone, too, is lying. This spindly book keeps its secrets close to its chest until finally arriving at its terrible, explosive end.